The new Fiesta, which is larger and better equipped than the current car on sale in SA, is at the show "to gauge customer reaction" says Ford marketing boss Nigel Harris - although insiders say the car has been already earmarked for sale here next year.
Outwardly reminiscent of the Focus and continuing with the Ford "New Edge" design concept, the Fiesta has 1.3-litre, 1.4-litre (petrol or diesel) and 1.6-litre engines. The Auto Africa display unit is fitted with the 1.6-litre motor.
The 1.3-litre Duratec 8V features low-friction valve train technology for low fuel consumption levels - only 6.2 litres/100 km, while the 1.4-litre diesel-powered Duratorq TDCi is the first product of a co-operative agreement between Ford Motor Company and PSA Peugeot Citroën to develop future diesel technology jointly.
Fuelled by the latest high-pressure common rail injection technology, Duratorq TDCi-powered Fiestas are targeted to achieve low fuel consumption levels of 4.3 litres/100 km.
Finally, there is the new double-overhead cam petrol engine developed from that fitted to the Ford Focus, which joins the Fiesta range in two small-car configurations: the 1.4-litre, and 1.6-litre variant.
The new Fiesta boasts Ford's new Intelligent Protection System, which features new smart safety technology that is better able to sense the severity of a frontal impact, and it has four-channel ABS with electronic brake force distribution (EBD).
Meanwhile, the new Bantam has benefited from an aesthetic makeover that has been inspired by the current l Fiesta and Ikon models.
The car has a 600 kg payload and is fitted with locally-built RoCam engines that ensures a start-up local content of more than 66%.
Both 1.3 and 1.6-litre petrol engines are available, while there is also a 1.8-litre diesel up for grabs.
Bantam bakkie's new face. Click here for Bantam photo gallery
On the performance side, the 1.3i RoCam delivers 55 kW at 5 500 r/min and 110 Nm of torque at 2 500 r/min while the 1.6i RoCam (fitted to the show unit) generates 70 kW of power at 5 500 r/min and 137 Nm of torque at 2 500 r/min.
In addition to the petrol versions, the Bantam offers the 1.8-litre indirect injection naturally aspirated diesel engine.
Service intervals have been extended to 15 000 km for the petrol engines and 10 000 km for the diesel engines equating to a 50% reduction in running costs and vehicle downtime. A 3-year/100 000 km warranty as standard.
Click here for Bantam photo gallery